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Don’t Order Your Orthodontic Treatment Online Before Reading This

By Dr. Amirparviz Davoody & Dr. Rena Mehr

Today, with the click of a button you can do almost anything:  Order shoes. Get a ride across town. Watch your favorite Hollywood movie. It seems like every day there’s a newer and easier way to do almost everything. We’ve been programmed to accept that anything can be ordered online and delivered right to your front door. However, at Greater Houston Orthodontics there is one thing that we believe has no easy replacement: orthodontic treatment. There is no match for a trained, experienced professional when it comes to oral health.

The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) agrees. They just issued a Consumer Alert listing key questions to ask about direct-to-consumer orthodontic companies. You can download a print-friendly version here.

The issue is that many direct-to-consumer orthodontic companies do not involve the in-person evaluation and/or in-person supervision of your treatment we provide at Greater Houston Orthodontics, which is important because there is more to creating a healthy, beautiful smile than moving the visible portions of your teeth. If not done correctly any dental work can lead to potentially irreversible and expensive damage such as tooth and gum loss, changed bites, and other issues.

 

The Top 10 Questions To Ask

The AAO advises that when researching orthodontic treatment (including treatment models from direct-to-consumer companies like SmileDirectClub, Candid Co., Smilelove, SnapCorrect, Orthly, etc), you should consider many key questions, some of which include:

  1. As part of your treatment, are comprehensive diagnostic records like x-rays taken before your treatment?
  2. As part of your treatment fee, do you receive any in-person visits to a dentist’s or orthodontist’s office during your treatment?
  3. Is only one treatment type offered (such as invisible aligners or a certain appliance)?
  4. If a dentist or orthodontist is involved with your treatment, do you know the name of the dentist or orthodontist who will be specifically involved with your case (for example, is it available on the company’s website or elsewhere)?
  5. What are the possible risks (financial, health, etc.) associated with your orthodontic treatment?
  6. Who is responsible for detecting any issues that may occur during your orthodontic treatment? Is it you? If it is a doctor not associated with your treatment, who pays for those check-ups?
  7. If a doctor is involved with your orthodontic treatment, how can you contact him or her over the course of your treatment? How can you contact him or her if an emergency arises?
  8. If an emergency arises, does the company have a dentist or orthodontist in your area that you can see in-person? If not, who would cover the costs associated with seeing a dentist or orthodontist in your area?
  9. If you are injured or have another dispute involving your orthodontic treatment, how is it handled (litigation, arbitration, etc.) and what rights do you have?
  10. Does the treatment model comply with the dental laws in your state? To check your state’s dental laws, click https://www.aaoinfo.org/state-laws-and-regulations. Information for your state dental board can be found at https://www.aaoinfo.org/aao/state-dental-board-info.

 

Where You Receive Your Health Care Is A Very Important Personal Decision


Remember that orthodontic treatment is not a product or device – it is a professional, medical service. Dr. Amir Davoody received his dental degree from the University of Maryland School of Dentistry and his Master of Dental Sciences from the University of Connecticut. Dr. Rena Mehr received her Bachelor’s in Neuroscience, and her Doctorate of Dental Surgery from the University of California Los Angeles.

Before making any decision about orthodontic treatment, consider doing some research and having a complimentary in-person consultation at Greater Houston Orthodontics. We can’t wait to meet you.

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Dr. Amir Davoody and Dr. Rena Mehr lead a friendly, dedicated team that works together to create a positive experience for patients and their families that’s fun, light hearted, warm and inviting. The doctors and team use the most advanced treatments available today, including Invisalign, Invisalign Teen and Incognito™ invisible braces.

With two convenient locations in Bellaire and Memorial, we are ready to help you start smiling. Please contact our West University or our Memorial office to schedule a complimentary consultation with Dr. Davoody and Dr. Mehr.

Thinking About Mail-In Orthodontics? Read This First!

Wouldn’t you love to simply take a selfie, and/or impression of your teeth Young man wearing clear braces.or get your teeth scanned, and receive aligners that straighten your teeth in a few months without even leaving your home? Sounds too good to be true, huh?

This is exactly the type of convenience offered and advertised with direct-to-consumer orthodontics. Companies like SmileDirectClub, Smilelove, SnapCorrect, etc. are appealing because they address the concern most people have about orthodontics: time. The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) advises you to take a step back and look at the overall picture before considering the latest alternative to straighten your teeth. Read More

The Skinny On Mail Order Orthodontics

Would you consider undergoing orthodontic treatment to improve your smile without ever having to step foot inside an orthodontic or dental office? In the last couple years, there has been a significant increase in the purchase of mail order orthodontics and at-home teeth straightening kits, especially with teens. What’s the hook? It is advertised as a more cost-effective and convenient way to achieve a better smile. Watch this video!

Read More

Vegan Diet And Braces

While we’ve all heard that milk is great for building strong bones and teeth, not everyone drinks milk. Although more Americans are becoming proactive about taking care of their overall health, many of us have dietary preferences that exclude dairy products.

Both calcium and vitamin D are essential to your oral health, but are you getting enough calcium? At Greater Houston Orthodontics, we understand that some of us simply cannot consume foods rich in calcium, like milk, due to lactose intolerance and dairy allergies…even when wearing braces. We also understand that others choose vegan or vegetarian lifestyles that eliminate certain food groups, increasing the risk for calcium and vitamin D deficiency.Read More

Alcohol And Orthodontics

Alcohol and braces Houston TXYou already know the effects alcohol can have on your body, but do you know how it can affect your oral health? At Greater Houston Orthodontics, our job is to educate adult patients on how to keep their teeth healthy during orthodontic treatment. Before you pick up that glass of your favorite alcoholic beverage, consider what’s inside.

Acid – Most alcoholic drinks are very high in acid content. Mixed drinks made of soda or fruit juices typically have the most acid. If left on the teeth too long, acid can erode the enamel on your teeth, making you prone to disease-causing bacteria.
Sugar – Whether you can taste it or not, your alcoholic drink of choice most likely has sugar in it. Sugar is bacteria’s best friend. Bacteria feed on the sugar left on your teeth and leave acid behind.
Dyes – Many wines and spirits contain dyes that can stain your teeth. Avoid colorful drinks and red wines to keep your teeth bright and healthy. Drinking white wines causes no discoloration.

Tips for Drinking Alcohol with Braces

  • Don’t babysit your drink. While sipping on your drink over time saves you money and keeps you from becoming intoxicated too quickly, it can have a negative effect on your teeth. Your mouth does not get time to balance its pH, helping bacteria to thrive.
  • Drink water throughout the evening. Not only can drinking water between drinks keep you hydrated, but it can also rinse away some of the acid and sugar from your drinks. Occasionally swish it around before you swallow.
  • Don’t skip your nightly routine. No matter how tired you may be, remember to brush and floss before bed. You don’t want your first breath the next morning to taste like last night.
  • Be smart and drink in moderation. Remember to drink responsibly and pace yourself. Try not to overdo it and be sure to have a designated driver or other transportation to get home safely.

On a Serious Note…Did you know that regular consumption of alcohol can increase your risk for oral cancer? A study by the American Cancer Society found that people who drink alcoholic beverages often are six times more likely to develop oral cancer than someone who does not. Of those diagnosed with oral cancer, 75-80% are regular consumers of alcohol.

Be Proactive

The best thing you can do for your teeth is, to be honest about your alcohol consumption and proactive when it comes to dealing with its effects. Keep the above tips in mind when drinking alcohol. Together, we can make sure you have the healthy, bright smile you’ve always wanted. Contact our Memorial or West Houston TX office with any questions you may have or to schedule a complimentary initial consultation.